Above is a link to an old video clip I converted and uploaded to youtube for Valentine’s Day, of our seventh anniversary, a surprise I arranged for my wife Dee in 1983. In a future post I’ll talk about the surprise for the tenth anniversary in Spain. So surely its all been smooth sailing the last 28 years, right? After all, I must have built up hundreds of thousands of love credits in my love bank on that afternoon in Piedmont Park, right?
Well, no, knowing the key and the secret isn’t even enough. It’s hard work, and its constant effort, and saying the right things help, as well as not saying the wrong things. But I’ve discussed that actions speak louder than words, and your actions are important. Last week I drove in a snow storm for 6 hours, ice building up on the windshield, leaning over trying to see out, passing literally dozens and dozens of cars and trucks that had slipped off into the median or in the ditch, many of the trucks turned over, or stopped pointing the wrong way on the other side of the divided highway. I was trying to talk on the telephone with Dee, to get a place to stop, and she was not hearing everything I said, maybe vice versa as well.
In any case, we were not communicating. If I could have found some humor in the situation, I would have observed that I felt like Cool Hand Luke – what we have here is a failure to communicate. But also I was concerned that mentioning Cool Hand Luke might lead to a contest to see how many hard boiled eggs I could eat later that weekend. Then there was an accidental spill during the time I was preparing to upload the video. But the point I am getting to is that what came to mind is what the Key and the Secret to Good Love is.
I am sure that someone out there has come to the point that they felt it wasn’t worth it any more, there was no hope for the marriage. Maybe you have felt that the passion is gone, that your spouse takes you for granted. Maybe your spouse has even humiliated you with unfaithfulness. Perhaps it seems that the best/only solution is to find another partner.
Well, allow me to revisit and expand on some of what I said back on Jan. 21, 2011. I talked about Gredler’s Love Line, and the fact that we want to keep moving to the right, towards Good Love, Better Love, and Best Love. Well, we never stay at any one place on this line in any relationship. No action, no effort automatically means you move to the left. The Key is that rather than the normal, one step forward, two steps back, we have to strive to always take two steps forward for every step back.
Back on Jan. 21 I also talked about Sternberg’s love triangle with the three principle components of love being, intimacy, passion, and commitment. I added three complementary components, one to go with each of Sternberg’s, in order: honesty, humor, and forgiveness. Well, in my humble opinion (IMHO – these web abbreviations are great) the Secret is forgiveness. In many cases, the only way in a relationship to recover from a step backwards, and take two forward is to ask for and grant forgiveness. And to forgive means to forget and put behind you as well.
I recommend two more books as resources. They are excellent, and don’t cost much. His Needs, Her Needs and Love Busters, both by Willard F. Harley are available here and here at Amazon. He is the source of my comment on credits in my love bank. He doesn’t mention God, the Bible, or spiritual things, but I can’t help but think Harley’s principles are represented by the Bible’s Best Love of God demonstrated by His Son.
And what better expression of love is there, other than I John 3:16 – This is how we know what love is: Jesus Christ laid down his life for us. And we ought to lay down our lives for our brothers. Maybe no one will require us to lay down our lives for our brothers, or our spouse, and maybe we couldn’t do that if someone did require it. But surely we can forgive others, surely we can humble ourselves to admit when we are wrong or have screwed up. We can lay down our pride. God provided forgiveness for us with His Best Love, surely we can give and receive forgiveness from those we share loving relationships with. That is the secret – and don’t keep the secret hidden, act.